Hemochromatosis is the most common genetic disorder in Canada. It is a condition of Iron overload, that is, when the body absorbs Iron more than normal. This disorder has two forms. Primary Hemochromatosis, also Heredity Hemochromatosis, is a genetic disorder that is inherited from the parents. In this situation more Iron is absorbed into the Gastro-Intestinal tract. This results into Liver swelling. Another form of this disorder is the Secondary Hemochromatosis, also known as Acquired Hemochromatosis. This is not genetic. It is a result of outside factors. More men are affected by this disorder than women. In men, this disease usually occurs at the age of 30-50, whereas in women, after the age of 50. An individual has a higher risk of getting the disorder if it is in the family history. Causes
Heredity hemochromatosis is a result of defective HFE gene which regulates the Iron absorption in body. Two known mutations of HFE are C282Y and H63D. This results in too much Iron being absorbed into the body. This disease occurs and can be very devastating if inherited from both parents. Otherwise the child is a carrier but still there be more Iron absorption than normal. Acquired hemochromatosis is caused by outside factors like Anemia, alcoholism, and a lot of blood transfusions.
The most common symptom of this disorder, that is a complaint by every patient, is Joint pain. Other symptoms include fatigue, lack of energy, lack of sexual desire, weight loss and loss of body hair, impotence and early menopause. Some of the symptoms could be defects or disorders in other body organs caused by this disorder like liver swelling, arthritis, etc. Treatment
The treatment of this disorder aims at removing excess Iron from the body and treats the defected organs. Phlebotomy is considered to be the best method of removing excess Iron from the body. In this method, half a liter of blood is removed from the body each week until the...
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